Zlatan gets his own verb
Sweden captain Zlatan Ibrahimovic has already written his name large in his country’s sporting history books and now he is in the Swedish dictionary as well. The Swedish Language Council has included the verb zlatanera — meaning “to dominate” — in its list of new words from this year, it said on its Web site. The verb “to zlatan” was originally coined by a satirical TV show in France, where Ibrahimovic plays for Paris Saint-Germain. The word has been in common use in Swedish ever since. Known for his spectacular goals, the muscular forward scored four times against England last month, including with an outrageous overhead kick, as Sweden came back to win 4-2 in the first international at the new Friends Arena in Stockholm.
Urbina returns after jail spell
Former major league pitcher Ugueth Urbina returned to baseball on Friday after serving seven-and-a-half years in prison for the attempted murder of five workers on his family’s ranch. Before taking the field in his native Venezuela to play for the Lions of Caracas, Urbina described himself as “more mature” and said he was “very excited to play baseball again.” “I’m excited to be here,” Urbina told reporters at the University Stadium in Caracas, where the Lions played the Zulia Eagles. The 38-year-old pitcher was released from prison on Sunday after serving roughly half of his 14-year sentence for attempted murder during a dispute over a gun on Oct. 16, 2005. Urbina was found guilty of attacking and injuring workers with a machete. Several other men participated in the attack at his family’s ranch, located about 40km from Caracas. Urbina, who pitched for the Montreal Expos, Boston Red Sox, Texas Rangers, Florida Marlins, Detroit Tigers and Philadelphia Phillies, has repeatedly denied involvement in the incident that landed him in prison, saying he was sleeping at the time of the attack. A two-time All-Star, Urbina saved 237 big league games from 1995-2005. He had two saves in the 2003 World Series to help the Marlins beat the New York Yankees, and last pitched in the majors with the Phillies in 2005.
Puerto Rican boxing great Wilfred Benitez has been hospitalized after family members worried he might have suffered a stroke. Yvonne Benitez said that her brother would remain under observation for 72 hours. She said on Friday that the family was awaiting medical tests results, but that the 54-year-old Benitez was doing well and reading newspapers and magazines. Benitez is the youngest fighter to ever win a world title, at 17 years old, but he has struggled with traumatic brain injuries later in life. He was previously hospitalized in October 1996 after being found unconscious at home and currently uses a wheelchair.
Davids takes over at Barnet
Former Dutch international Edgar Davids has taken over as sole head coach at English League Two club Barnet after the departure of Mark Robson, with whom he previously shared the role. Davids, 39, joined Barnet in October as joint head coach alongside Robson, but the club have struggled this season and currently lie three points above the relegation zone. “Edgar Davids will continue in his role as head coach and will take full responsibility for all first team footballing matters,” Barnet said on their Web site.